Football coaches at Payson High School are stressing the importance of prospective players turning out for the first day of practice when they begin Monday evening. Those who don't turn out immediately run the risk of losing valuable conditioning time. Also, they will not have the advantage of mastering the offensive and defensive schemes of new coach Jerry Rhoades.
Of course, later in the season that could result in less playing time.
The first line players are usually those who are best conditioned and have mastered the nuances of their positions on both sides of the ball.
So, the bottom line is, turn out for practices and take advantage of the teaching and coaching that will be going on all next week.
Training sessions will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. until Aug. 1 at the Rumsey Park south field. Weight training sessions will be held Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 5 p.m.
Preseason training resumes Aug. 4 at 3:30 p.m. All athletes must have their physical and insurance forms on file in the office of athletic director Dave Bradley before they will be allowed to practice that day.
The Longhorns spring into action a week earlier than other fall sports at PHS. The team travels to Snowflake Aug. 22 for its annual preseason scrimmage. Kickoff is 7 p.m. Under Arizona Interscholastic Association rules, no score can be kept and the game statistics are not counted in final tabulations.
The campaign officially begins at 7 p.m. Aug. 29, on PHS field against the Cortez Colts.
For more information, call Rhoades at (928) 474-2233.
Last chance at football and cheer
A final Payson youth football and cheerleading registration will be held from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday) at the Rumsey North multipurpose field.
Prospective players and cheerleaders must bring a copy of their birth certificates to the signup.
The registration fee is $70 for players and $60 for cheerleaders. There will be, however, an additional $10 late fee.
Discounts are available for families who have more than one child participating in the program.
Immediately after tomorrow's final registration, coaches and league officials will conduct the annual drafting of players to teams.
Players are drafted to leagues --ighty mite, minor or major -- based on a combination of their age and weight.
Youngsters from 6 to 13 and weighing less than 115 pounds are eligible to participate. Ages are determined as of July 28, 2003. Practices begin July 28. The season kicks off Sept. 6.
Call Schrank at 474-5613 or Angela Parker at 468-6482 for more information.
PAHH golf on tap
More than 100 players from around the state are expected to participate in the Seventh Annual Pioneer Title Agency Benefit Golf Tournament Aug. 23 at Payson Golf Course.
Among the cities to be represented are Sierra Vista, Prescott, Payson and several in the Valley. Proceeds from the tournament will benefit the Payson Area Habitat for Humanity and its mission to provide decent affordable and healthy houses in partnership with low and moderate income Payson residents, PAHH spokesperson Judy Berger said.
The tournament, which tees off at 8 a.m., will feature a best ball scramble format.
Entry fee is $70 per player or $50 for members of Payson Golf Course. The fee includes 18 holes of golf, cart, lunch, drinks and a chance to win prizes.
Although the tournament will be played in foursomes, participants may enter as individuals and be placed on a team by the tournament directors.
Players also can form their own foursome. Entry forms are available at Pioneer Title, 421 South Beeline Highway; the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, the Payson Roundup or at the PAHH office at 1013 S. Goodfellow Road. Entry forms must be returned by Aug. 11 to Pioneer Title.
Call (928) 474-3235 for more information.